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Expat Cruise

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Everything posted by Expat Cruise

  1. Agreed the Cruise Line is just trying to keep control of the PR. That said they can block web sites and do have a history of doing so. Princess could have blocked the CC site in the ships WiFi.
  2. You are confessed, it is not cheap but educated and understand the meaning of words, terms and contacts. And since only 52% of the CC board members polled agree with DSC I am in good company with the smarter half of the members.
  3. And by their rules and the revenue department because of how they want to account for these fees they are optional fees. My choice is to not pay these optional fees and nothing anyone can do to stop me and many other guests from doing exactly that.
  4. That is your opinion and you are entitled to a opinion. What you are not entitled to is to try to make everyone follow your opinion. The way I see it paying the DSC is empowering the cruise lines to enslave the crews. The crew should get on the ship knowing if they do the job they will be paid a fair wage, and not need to relay on the guests paying extra money to make that happen.
  5. Did not assume anything, sorry if people don't like the facts, the facts are only 52% agree with the DSC system.
  6. Well by a poll here on Cruisecritic only 52% of the people polled agree with the DSC charges, so I guess I'm in good company with the 48% that do not agree with them. Again if you want to pay them go ago but nothing anyone can do to change what others do. From Email : The Truth About Tipping on a Cruise "What Our Members Say: In a poll taken on Cruise Critic's message boards about auto-gratuities, 52 percent of more than 3,700 respondents said they appreciate the convenience of auto-tipping on a cruise."
  7. The right thing is always the right thing. Does not matter if easy, hard, convenient, liked or disliked.... it is the right thing to do. And paying a fee that is optional and represented as doing one thing but does a completely different thing is not right ever.
  8. The answer here is very simple, if you make your payments on a international credit card any: MasterCard, Visa, Discover, or Amex. Under the merchant agreement to accept these cards the merchant ie Scenic must provide what they advertise and represent. The cruise contract is meaningless becasue the merchant agreement comes first. If they do not provide the cruise, move the dates or cancel it, do not even wait for a refund. Dispute the whole amount with your credit card and they will refund in full. Nothing the cruise line says will change this and no wait, most cards refund at the start of the dispute and then make the refund final a few weeks later. No reason to allow the cruise company to have any control. They have now changed the date 3 times and they will again. This ship will not be ready when they say it will.
  9. The cruise lines block sites like streaming video, if you use a VPN you can access these sites and therefore use more bandwidth than the cruise lines want you to use. So the statement "the main reason is so guests cannot use programs that take a lot of bandwidth." is absolutely correct.
  10. It is not the guests job to pay the salaries of the behind the scene people. Paying daily gratuities in this way is not doing the right thing. In fact it is the wrong thing if you care about the crew. They need to pay a fair wage to the crew without including tips in that wage. If people really want to do the right thing stop paying these fees and make the cruise lines accountable for their staff.
  11. It is selective memory when many want to believe these fees are required or mandatory. The daily fee amount is only a recommend amount by the cruise line, it means nothing. The fee is 100% optional so the guest can pay whatever they want anytime they want.
  12. many reasons cruise lines block them. But I believe the main reason is so guests cannot use programs that take a lot of bandwidth. Things like calling programs and video chats, requiring a lot of bandwidth. The second reason is they want to keep you off many sites and have these sites blocked. If you use a VPN you control what you view and how. I like F! racing and when I travel I use live streaming but the cruise lives block these sites, so I use a VPN. On Princess this year I wanted to contact a lawyer office, his website was blocked, so I need to use a VPN. When I asked him about it he said Princess did it after he won a multi million dollar lawsuit against them. I want control of my internet.
  13. It really depends upon the VPN the free and common ones RCCL & other cruise lines have found and blocked. But that doesn't mean all of them. I have about 15 loaded on my lap top and always seem to find at least one of them will work.
  14. Water is not always water. It has been report some guests have used water bottles to bring other things inboard. That is one reason for in the carry on bags, a scanner cannot tell the difference between water and vodka, gin, rum or any other clear liquor.
  15. If you want to travel in many parts of the World you follow the rules they have. Your rights as a US Passport Holder mean very little. They will take copies, they will share them, and in many cases they will take your passport and hold it. Your choice if you do not want is don't enter the country. In many places in SE Asia; rental car companies, motor bike, Jet Ski rentals will not give you the rental without holding your passport. And the landlord or Hotel operator is required to confirm you are legal in the country and report your information. Again US rules do not apply, your rights do not apply, you are not under US Protection outside of the country.
  16. We should not forget that many religions require the head to be covered. I have friends who in public will wear baseball caps in place of kippah.
  17. Really you can pay now at the old rate or pay on the ship at the old rate. The fee quoted is only the recommend daily service fee, guests are free to change or adjust as they see fit. What you pay is absolutely what you choose to pay, if you pay this fee at all.
  18. Do you really think guests should trust crews, hotel staffs etc? The first thing I do when I enter my cabin is place cameras in the cabin. If a crew member wanted to try anything like what has been described here the cruise line would be paying a settlement of several million dollars..... How much damage would it do to a cruise line, hotel or other tourist business to have video proof, this all over the internet? And cruise lines have deep pockets.... Better chance of the cruise ship sinking than these internet myths.
  19. Yes US Passport holders can just show up at the official border crossing points and get a Visa on Arrival. But the River cruise may not using these crossing points. Seems live a lot of risk to take for just a possible few dollar savings. And even the official points are not always staffed. Several years ago a friend and I wanted to cross from Thailand to Cambodia, we showed up at the crossing point and no guard , no one but a few locals who said just cross no problem. We did not do this and drove three hours away to cross at a different point. it is your trip and your money but maybe you should look again at this. One thing I have learned living the last 20 years in SE Asia is that things do not always go the way they should here, and the way you fix them is by paying much much more money later vs a nothing amount now.
  20. It should be noted that these daily fee amounts are only what is recommend by the Cruise Line. The recommend amount really means very little, tipping on Carnival Cruise Lines is at the discretion of the guests. From the Carnival US Website: "SERVICE GRATUITIES (TIPS) It is customary to extend gratuities (tips) to the shipboard staff for their services. How much to tip is a personal matter and completely up to our guests." It is a personal matter that is by contract completely voluntary. You the guests are free to pay whatever you feel is the correct amount. If you want to pay the old recommend amount, you are absolutely fee to do so, before or after this so called deadline.
  21. While I'm not a fan of the policies NCL uses to sell cabins in this case I must say they have done absolutely nothing wrong. A port hole is a upgrade from a obstructed view cabin. If they want to sell all the obstructed view cabins and give you a port hole that is their choice. As others have said they only guarantee you a room in the category you book or higher. Which is exactly what they did. These guaranteed cabins are a deal becasue you agree to the terms. If you wanted a 100% guaranteed obstructed view you needed to pay more and book one.
  22. But here even if the correct answer is posted those that do not like the answer will keep posting more answers. Some believe if they don't like the answer post more and it will change.
  23. Do you have first hand knowledge of this or just what you believe. I have disputed charges with RCCL, got a total refund and later used the same card. If Royal tried to as you said blackball one of my cards they would be explaining to the credit card provider as to why they took actions not allowed under the merchant agreement. I know some companies try to do this but it only works if the client does not know the rules.
  24. I really do not understand why people wait for the cruise company to cancel packages and credit the refunds. No reason in the World to wait, just contact the credit card provider and start a dispute, reason you cancelled the services. It will be credited the same day with most credit card companies. As a card holder and customer of the cruise line you are doing absolutely nothing wrong, the credit card user agreement which controls these situations does not require you to wait.
  25. Have been on two Princess Cruises this year with port stops in Vietnam, both times July & October Princess charged me US Passport $30.00 for visa. My wife presented her Philippines Passport and the visa fee was zero. I have heard these numbers quoted 56.00 by never know anyone charged this amount in USD. In AUD dollars yes the fee is higher and charged at AU$56.00 but never talked to a passenger charged* US$56.00 for the visa. *Charged means added to your ship account and paid..... I know Princess says US $56.00 but what they say and do seem to be two different things.
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